The bustle of hot stove season came to a rapid halt on Wednesday as the MLB and the MLBPA failed to reach an agreement before the collective bargaining agreement expired at midnight. The lockout Iis the first work stoppage for Major League Baseball since 1995.
Dorsey-led Square Renamed as Block to Lean Into Crypto
Just days after Jack Dorsey confirmed that he is leaving Twitter, his other company, digital payment company Square, announced that they were rebranding as Block Inc. The move is being compared to last month’s Facebook’s “Meta” reveal. Square has a number of business units, that includes Tidal streaming service and Cash App, and it is expected that in the coming months they will expand their place in the crypto universe.
Sports NFTs on Track to Top $2B in Sales in 2021
At this time last year, a very small subset of the population had even heard the term “NFT,” now it’s one of the Collins Dictionary’s words of the year. A recent report from Deloitte corroborates the rise of NFTs, estimating $2B in sales of sports NFTs in 2021, with 4 to 5 million fans getting in the digital collectibles game.
Disney Taps Susan Arnold to Replace Iger as Chair of Board
On Wednesday, Disney confirmed that Susan Arnold will take over as Chair of the Board, effective Jan. 1, making her the first woman to claim the position in the company’s 98-year history. She will replace Bob Iger who has held the position since 2012 and announced his intentions to step down as chairman of the board at Disney at the end of the year. Arnold has been on the board for 14 years, serving as its independent lead director since 2018. She has held a number of professional roles, most recently as an operating executive at the private equity firm The Carlyle Group.
WTA Suspends Tournament Play in China
Following three-time Olympian Peng Shuai’s accusations that she was sexually assaulted by a former Communist Party official, the WTA announced on Wednesday that they will suspend all tournament play from the country for the foreseeable future. In confirming the news, WTA President and CEO Steve Simon said, “This is … about what’s right and wrong.”
Texas Unveils Clark Field Collective to Support NIL Opportunities
The University of Texas is following in the footsteps of the University of Oregon and the University of Washington, bringing together alumni and local businesses to support NIL opportunities. The Clark Field Collective was announced on Wednesday, committing a $10 million donation to the school. In addition to building NIL partnerships, the Collective seeks to build a “Universal Basic Earnings” structure for student-athletes.
ESPN to Host First-Ever Paid Spaces Even to Benefit Jimmy V Foundation
Today at 2:00 p.m. EST, you can be part of a one-of-a-kind conversation with ESPN personalities, including Jay Bilas, Mike Greenberg, and special guests who are all working together for a good cause. Listeners will pay a $0.99 donation to benefit the V Foundation for Cancer Research as part of the network’s V Week. The conversation will be the first monetized, ticketed Space in the world of sports, and the first-ever ticketed Spaces to also serve as a fundraiser.
NBA Social Justice Coalition Launches Social Media Feeds
After announcing their formation last year the NBA Social Justice Coalition debuted their social media presence on Wednesday with a powerful introductory video. In the 2-minute clip, several players, including Carmelo Anthony, Karl-Anthony Towns, and Donovan Mitchell, expressed their commitment to advancing their work surrounding various equity issues to spur policy change. The Social Justice Coalition is a joint partnership between the NBA, NBA Players Association, and NBA Coaches Association (NBCA).
Michigan-Ohio State Game Draws Record-Setting Audience
Michigan toppled Ohio State last Saturday, leaping to No. 2 in the AP Poll and working its way into the playoff picture. However, the good news didn’t end there. The game drew 15.9 million viewers, making it the most-watched regular-season college football game in Fox’s history.